Celebrate 20 Years of Denver Restaurant Week

BY Linnea Covington

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It’s hard to believe VISIT Denver’s Denver Restaurant Week has gone on for 20 years, and the options continue to grow. During the inaugural year in 2023, 83 places signed up. Today over 200 restaurants have joined the fun and it has gone from one week to 10 days. 

Now, you can eat the world with cuisines centered around Brazil, Italy, France and beyond. Choices range from fine dining to fast casual to something in between. For this period only, each restaurant puts out a menu featuring a multi-course meal in one of four price points: $25, $35, $45, and $55. 

With so many amazing options, it’s hard to pick just 10. That said, here are some of the Denver Restaurant Week (DRW) menus we’re excited about. These picks either offer dishes deviant from the main line up or a deal too good to pass up.

Want a Maine-style lobster roll or bowl of lobster bisque? How about a dry-aged ribeye or beef bourguignon? Read on to find out who’s dishing out these goodies, and see the whole DRW list online. Just make sure to secure those reservations as soon as possible.

Reckless Noodle

From Seattle comes the hip Southeast Asian hot spot, Reckless Noodle. Now in its second year, the downtown restaurant is known for a killer happy hour and bright, fresh dishes with a strong Thai bent. For DRW, expect more of the same as each $35 meal includes three courses with a lot of options. Highlights not found on the regular menu include lobster rangoon bao, Shanghai spicy wontons with crab, and black sesame ice cream with fresh caramel from Sweet Action Ice Cream. 800 Sherman St., Denver, recklessnoodlesdenver.com

Bon Ami Bistro & Creperie

Three courses for just $45 proves a real deal for a meal at the Washington Park French restaurant. One can’t go wrong with a bowl of French onion soup, trout almondine, and creme brulee. Nor can you fail when ordering the mussels in garlic cream white wine sauce, beef bourguignon, and a rich chocolate mousse.  295 S. Pennsylvania St., Denver, bonamidenver.com

Rooted Craft Kitchen

white table with oysters, toast and bone marrow
Rooted Craft Kitchen is one of the many restaurants celebrating Denver Restaurant Week. | Photo by Linnea Covington

The only hard part about chef Nick Kayser’s Highland restaurant is finding parking. But once you do, the game is on for his $35 new American menu. With dishes such as lobster bisque, fresh burrata, grilled bistro tender, and a lemon tart, it’s a good deal too. 3940 W. 32nd Ave., Denver, rootedcraftkitchen.com

Bang Up To the Elephant

It’s not often one sees a carefully crafted menu of solely plant-based dishes, but this Capitol Hill restaurant does it well. During DRW the three-course, $35 menu features curry waffle fries, fried banana balls with caramel and chocolate rhum sauces, and the cassareep rice bowl with crispy tofu, onions, pineapple, sweet red peppers, and fresh tomato over coconut-rice with pickled onions, steamed broccoli, and fresh herbs. Add on a cocktail or zero-proof drink pairing to heighten the experience even more.  1310 Pearl St., Denver, banguptotheelephant.restaurant

Citizen Rail

On a normal night chef Christian Graves’ meat-forward restaurant leans toward the pricey side. But during DRW $55 gets you a lavish three-course spread. Think items such as coal-roasted beets in maple sherry, pork belly with blistered plums and Meyer lemon, and the signature brisket-short rib burger. For a $10 supplement, request the 100-day, dry-age, 16-ounce ribeye, which is treated in house to absolute perfection. Inside the Limelight Hotel, 1899 16th St. Mall, Denver, citizenrail.com

Steuben’s

Once a year Steuben’s doles out lobster rolls basically at cost. That time is now, where $35 gets you a cup of clam chowder or a salad, plus your choice of a Maine- or Connecticut-style lobster roll. Cap it off with a thick slice of Boston cream pie, and your taste of New England in Denver is set. 523 E. 17th Ave., Denver, steubens.com

Cafe Brazil

While Brazilian food may not be the first thing you think of when dining out, now is a good time to try the magic of Cafe Brazil in Berkeley. The DRW menu runs $45 and includes four courses. To start with, but not limited to, try the sweet potato and shrimp croquettes with jamon serrano, smoked cheddar and Haystack Mountain goat cheese. Next comes the second course, a gazpacho, followed by salmon with spinach and crabmeat queso fundido.To cap off the meal expect a brigadeiro,which is a type of Brazilian chocolate petit four. 4408 Lowell Blvd., Denver, cafebrazildenver.com

Coperta

brick building with coperta logo
Take a trip to Italy at Coperta. | Photo by Linnea Covington

Chef Paul C. Reilly knows southern Italian food, which gets showcased at his Uptown restaurant. Diners can know it too by booking a DRW reservation. For $45 the four-course menu includes Roman street fritters, spaghetti cacio e pepe, pan-roasted pork shoulder, gelato and more. 400 E. 20th Ave., Denver, copertadenver.com

Cafe Prague 

It’s worth the short drive to Morrison to dive into chef Ales Zabilansky’s European comfort foods. During Denver Restaurant Week, expect a four-course spread for $55 per person. Dishes may include smoked Norwegian salmon, tomato basil bisque, rosemary-honey roasted chicken, and wild boar stew with cabernet-lingonberry sauce, Bavarian bacon dumplings, and red cabbage. Top off the meal with a warm apple streusel before heading home. 209 Bear Creek Ave., Morrison, thecafeprague.com

Señor Bear

Of all the DRW menus, this one speaks to pairs. At $55 per person, expect to share two appetizers to go with a large-format main course, and dessert. On the menu find grilled carrots with mole michoacán, shrimp ceviche, branzino in guajillo soubise, and confit potatoes spiced with house-made seasoning and a dollop of canned cheese sauce. 3301 Tejon St., Denver, senorbeardenver.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Linnea Covington

Linnea Covington is the managing editor of DiningOut. She comes to us with a long background in food, restaurant and drinks journalism. Over the last two decades she’s written for tons of publications including Denver Post, Washington Post, Forbes Travel Guide, 5280 Magazine, New York Magazine, New York Times, Time Out New York and more.

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